Federal prosecutors and Washngton,D.C., police officials last year said the killing of a 14-year-old boy by two off-duty police officers was justifiable because the boy had fired first at the officers. No gun was linked to the boy. The Washington Post re-examined the case, finding an “ambiguous picture, revealing a chain of police missteps and oversights that invite questions about what happened that evening.” By not securing the scene and the evidence, the off-duty officers made it impossible to determine conclusively whether the boy had fired a weapon.
Police cited an acoustic sensor system known as ShotSpotter, which detects and locates gunshots, as evidence there were two shooters. The system could not determine who fired or from what positions. The victim’s family has filed a $100 million wrongful death lawsuit against the city and the two officers in U.S. District Court.